This Week’s Message
Praying with Our Patrons
On Wednesday, July 26th, the Catholic Church celebrates the Feast of Saints Ann and Joachim. An old story dating from the first centuries of the Church’s existence recalls how Ann and Joachim, like Abraham and Sarah, were scorned by their neighbors because they had no children. Years of disappointment did not weaken their trust in God, but grief eventually drove Joachim into the wilderness to fast and pray. Ann remained at home and wept because she had no child of her own. A young girl saw Ann’s distress and reminded her to place her trust in God alone. So Ann went into the garden and pleaded with God for a child. During this time of prayer, angels appeared to Ann in the garden and Joachim in the wilderness. The angels promised that despite their advanced ages, they would conceive a child who would be known throughout the world. Ann and Joachim ran to meet each other at Jerusalem’s Golden Gate where they kissed and rejoiced in the new life that God promised them. Their child, of course, would become the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God.
More than two thousand years later, Saint Ann and Saint Joachim are powerful patrons for all married cou- ples; married couples who are having difficulty conceiving a child; expectant mothers; all parents and grandparents; and the elderly. Saint Ann is also venerated as patroness of homemakers, sailors, and single women. In addition, the Basilica of Saint Ann de Beaupre (Quebec City, Canada) is regarded as a place of miracles, es- pecially for those who suffer from physical disabilities and paralysis. As we celebrate the feast of our patrons, let us pray together for the intercession of Saint Ann and Saint Joachim and their child, the Blessed Virgin Mary! Saint Ann, pray for us! Saint Joachim, pray for us! Our Lady of Good Voyage, pray for us!
A Novena to Saints Ann & Joachim
Saint Ann and Saint Joachim,
you are the good parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary
and blessed grandparents of our Lord Jesus Christ.
When we are afraid: Help us to trust in the Lord.
When life seems barren: Help us to trust in God’s mercy.
When we are confused: Help us to find the way to God.
When we are ashamed: Remind us that we are God’s children.
When we are selfish: Teach us to cling only to what lasts.
When we sin: Lead us to do God’s will.
When we are lost in the desert: Lead us to those God has called us to love.
You know God’s will for the family: Keep all families close to you.
You know God’s will for husband & wife: Help us to live in chastity & fidelity.
You trusted God’s will: Help us to respect God’s gift of fertility.
You suffered without children: Pray for married couples who wish to conceive.
You gave life to Mary: Inspire married couples to be co-creators with God.
You taught Mary: Teach us to nurture children in faith, hope & love.
You trusted in God: Pray for all married couples.
You trusted in God: Pray for all parents.
You trusted in God: Pray for all grandparents.
Almighty God and Father,
you bestowed on Saints Ann and Joachim this singular grace:
that their daughter, Mary, should become
the Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Through their intercession, grant us the salvation
that you promised to your people.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God forever and ever. Amen.
Saint Ann, pray for us!
Saint Joachim, pray for us!
Our Lady of Good Voyage, pray for us!
Holy Family Parish
Annual Crowning Ceremony
Sunday, July 23rd
In anticipation of the Feast of Saint Ann and Saint Joachim, all parishioners, friends, and guests of Holy Family Parish and the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport are invited to join us for the Annual Crowning of Saint Ann and the Blessed Virgin Mary after our 8:15am Mass on Sunday, July 23rd. As a community of faith, let us unite our hearts and voices in prayer for the intercession of our patrons: Saint Ann, pray for us! Saint Joachim, pray for us! For more information about this special annual event, please contact Mary Rubino at 978- 281-0009. Please join us! All are welcome!
Holy Family Parish
Holy Hour & Benediction
Saturday, July 29th
In commemoration of the Feast of Saint Ann and Saint Joachim, all are welcome to join us on Saturday, July 29th for a period of prayer in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in Saint Ann Church. This special holy hour will begin with Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and Daytime Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours at 3:00pm. At 3:30pm, we will pray the Holy Rosary and conclude with Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. All parishioners, friends, and guests of Holy Family Parish and the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport are invited to join us for this special time of prayer. For more information, please contact Father Jim at email@example.com. Please join us! All are welcome!
Holy Family Parish
Annual Summer Barbecue
Saturday, July 29th
All parishioners, friends, and guests of the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport are invited to join Holy Family Parish for our Annual Summer Barbecue & Picnic in celebration of the Feast of Saint Ann and Saint Joachim on Saturday, July 29th beginning with Mass at 4:00pm in Saint Ann Church. After Mass, our barbecue and picnic will be held in the courtyard behind the Parish Center and on the lawn of the Saint Ann House of Prayer. The Knights of Columbus (Council 215) will cook hamburgers and hot dogs. Soft drinks will be provided. Parishioners are asked to bring lawn chairs and a side dish to share with the community (chips, baked beans, summer salads, and desserts). We will also have fun activities for kids! For more information, please contact Father Jim at firstname.lastname@example.org. Bring your family! Bring a friend! All are invited! All are welcome!
The Assisi Project
Saturdays with Saint Francis
Saturday, July 29th
Founded in 2007 by Father Jim and Cliff Garvey, the Assi- si Project is a fellowship of “Franciscans in Spirit” with friends and followers around the world. Our mission is to help adults of all ages more faithfully live the Gospel in the spirit of Saints Francis and Clare of Assisi. The Assisi Project meets on the last Saturday of each month in Saint Ann Church for Mass, formation, and fellowship. Our next “Saturday Morning with Saint Francis” is scheduled for July 29th at 8:00am. If you are interested in growing closer to Christ through the guidance and intercession of Saint Francis of Assisi, please prayerfully consider joining us! For more information, please contact Cliff Garvey at email@example.com. All are invited! All are welcome! May the Lord give you peace!
Fourth Annual Summer Retreat
The Little Flowers
Begins Monday, August 7th
The summer season is a great time of year for stepping back from the business and busy-ness of daily life in order to focus on our personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Unfortunately, few among us are able to leave work, family, and friends behind for a real retreat from the world. For this reason, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport is pleased to announce our Fourth Annual Summer Retreat!
From Monday, August 7th through Friday, August 11th, all are invited to join Father Jim and Cliff Garvey for a unique opportunity to experience the spiritual peace and renewal of a week-long retreat without leaving home! Each evening of our summer retreat will begin at 7:00pm in Saint Anthony Chapel with Evening Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours. After our shared prayer, Father Jim and Cliff will lead our community in a period of reflection, discussion, and faith sharing. Each evening will conclude at 8:30pm with Night Prayer. During each day of the retreat, the chapel will open at 12:00pm for silent personal prayer and reflection.
This year, we will explore “The Little Flowers” of Saint Francis and Pope Francis. After his death in 1226, nearly eight centuries ago, the early followers of Saint Francis of Assisi wrote a series of little stories about his life and the miracles that he performed. These “Little Flowers” serve now as the foundation of our knowledge and understanding of Saint Francis and his lasting impact on the Church. In our own time, Andrea Tornielli, a journalist who covers the papacy, has assembled the so-called “Fioretti” or Little Flowers of Pope Francis, a heartwarming collection of stories about how the Holy Father lives the Gospel each and every day.
Between each night of the summer retreat, participants will be asked to read brief selections from both the “Little Flowers of Saint Francis” and the “Little Flowers of Pope Francis.” In this way, we will gain a better appreciation of these two holy men and their impact on the Church; and we will grow closer to Christ by learning from their good deeds and good works among God’s people. If you would like to join us for our Fourth Annual Summer Retreat, please contact Cliff Garvey at firstname.lastname@example.org by Sunday, August 6th. A donation of $30 is requested from those who can afford it. Copies of both books, along with cold drinks, will be provided. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome! Always!
Established in 2014, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport is a collaborative of two historic parishes: Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish. Working together as a Roman Catholic community united in prayer, fellowship, and service, we are committed to living the Gospel of Christ, sharing God’s love and mercy with all people, and rebuilding the Church in Gloucester & Rockport. All are invited! All are welcome! Always!
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